FORMULA 1

FERRARI HAS AN OPPORTUNITY TO WIN CAN THEY HANDLE IT?

It had taken a third of a season, but Ferrari finally came to the party last night as a resurgent Sebastian Vettel seized his first pole position in 17 grands prix.

After three months of crushing dominance by Mercedes, the four-time world champion took full advantage of his car’s superiority here on Montreal’s long straights to edge out Lewis Hamilton and set up an absorbing duel between the pair in today’s race.

Not since Hockenheim last season has he started at the front, and this belated recovery of form at the Canadian Grand Prix, where he claimed a dominant victory last year, clearly filled him with relief.

“I’m full of adrenalin,” Vettel said, having wrested pole by 24 hundredths of a second. “Lewis is b—– good in qualifying, he’s a tough nut to crack. It was one of those laps when I truly felt the grip. Mercedes will be very quick over the race distance, but we will try everything. But just this once, the car felt better and better. It kept shouting, ‘Keep going.’ I wish I could go out and do it again.”

INDYCAR

TAKUMA SATO TAKES POLE IN TEXAS

Takuma Sato achieved a racing dream by winning the NTT P1 Award in DXC Technology 600 qualifying.

The Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing driver circled Texas Motor Speedway at an average speed of 220.250 mph for two laps Friday evening in the No. 30 ABeam Consulting Honda. The 42-year-old veteran of nearly two decades competing in Formula One and the NTT IndyCar Series said winning the pole position at one of INDYCAR’s famous tracks made the accomplishment more special.

“Here in Texas, it’s kind of dreaming about it to be on pole,” Sato said. “I’ve been saying that to the guys, that this is one of the iconic tracks in the NTT IndyCar Series – high banking, very fast passing. … To be on pole is great.”

DXC TECHNOLOGY 600: Qualifying results

The pole was the ninth of Sato’s 10-year NTT IndyCar series career, second this season and first at Texas Motor Speedway. He’ll lead the 22-car field to the green flag in Saturday’s 248-lap race under the lights.

“Certainly the team gave us unbelievable speed in the car,” Sato said. “Just a phenomenal feeling to go that fast through the corners. In fact, I was keeping on the lower side of the range. The car is working extremely well.”

Scott Dixon, the defending Texas race winner and reigning series champion, will start alongside Sato on the front row. Dixon was second fastest in qualifying with two-lap average of 220.162 mph in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda. Dixon fell short of winning the pole by less than 0.02 of a second over the three-mile run.

Takuma Sato passing zach Veach Texas Speedway. Photo: Chris Owens

“Don’t feel like we did too much wrong in that qual run,” said Dixon, a three-time winner at TMS. “(I) got a little bit loose in (Turns) 1 and 2 on the second lap; definitely scrubbed some speed. I think that could have been enough. We were actually bottoming in (Turns) 3 and 4 as well. Always a few things you can clean up, (but) great starting position for us.”

Honda-powered cars locked up the top four spots in qualifying. Sebastien Bourdais was third in the No. 18 SealMaster Honda (219.746 mph), his best qualifying effort in six tries at TMS. Ryan Hunter-Reay was fourth in the No. 28 DHL Honda (219.537 mph).

“I actually turned the fastest lap in qualifying on Lap 1 (220.443 mph),” Bourdais said. “I maybe pushed it a little far that lap, so we had a dropoff on Lap 2. I’m just really happy for the guys, they did a really good job.”

Simon Pagenaud led the Chevrolet brigade in qualifying. The pole sitter and winner of the 103rd Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge two weeks ago was fifth fastest Friday at 219.355 mph in the No. 22 DXC Technology Chevrolet. Spencer Pigot was sixth in the No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevy (219.099 mph).

F1Weekly podcast #791

THE HOST IS BEGINNING TO CRACK UNDER THE 2019 F1 STRAIN AND NASIR CONTINUES TO HAVE NOTHING BUT PRAISE FOR LCH AND THE AMG MERCEDES.
WE HAVE A FRESH NEW EPISODE OF “PEGLER’S PERSPECTIVE” SOME THOUGHTS ON THE MCLAREN INDIANAPOLIS MELTDOWN!

McLaren miss is one of the biggest failures in Indy 500 history. Roger Penske missed the show with Al Unser Jr. and Emerson Fittipaldi in 1995, a year after dominating the race. Reigning CART champion Bobby Rahal missed it in 1993, and two-time Indy winner Rodger Ward never got up to speed to make the 1965 field.

“Rodger Ward @ Indianapolis, 1965, the 2X Indy 500 winner failed to qualify for the 1965 Indy 500, Ward’s worst finish in the Indy 500 ..

Gil de Ferran, the competition director for McLaren and a former Indy 500 winner, was gutted and apologized about a dozen times for the team’s failure. He also turned to Alonso and directly apologized to the driver during a news conference some two hours after they had been eliminated from the field.

“We didn’t give you a car that was fast enough. You drove like the champion you are. We couldn’t have asked anything more from you. I am sorry, man. You are an amazing driver,” de Ferran said. “We didn’t underestimate the challenge. We knew this was going to be a tremendously hard challenge. I’ve seen some incredible people not make the race so we certainly were very aware of how difficult this was going to be.”

Kaiser bumped Alonso by .02 mph in the “Last Row Shootout” to set the 33-driver field.

Play Podcast: 06-04-19f1weekly791.mp3

SONOMA SPEED FESTIVAL

SONOMA SPEED FESTIVAL DRAWS LEGENDARY RACECARS AND IMPRESSIVE ATTENDANCE TO SONOMA RACEWAY FOR INAUGURAL EVENT

Sonoma, Calif. (June 3, 2019) – The Sonoma Speed Festival hosted its inaugural event at Sonoma Raceway from May 31st to June 2nd, 2019 at Sonoma Raceway. The event highlighted over 300 of the world’s most iconic street and historic racing cars on track, alongside special demonstration runs from Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport and others. Thousands of enthusiasts attended through the course of the event.
Guests enjoyed unprecedented access to a selection of the world’s most historic and valuable racing cars both on and off the track, with highlights including three Ferrari 250 GTOs, four ex-John Wyer Gulf Racing vehicles including two Ford GT40s and two Porsche 917Ks, the Lotus Type 77 driven by Mario Andretti, a rare one-of-ten McLaren F1 GTR Longtail and much more. Demonstration runs from Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport throughout the race weekend in the 2016 Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport F1 W07/04 Formula 1 car, driven by team test and simulator driver Esteban Gutierrez, yielded a fastest lap time of 1:15.430 on the “full-course” configuration, the fastest lap ever recorded on the circuit.
Off the track, event highlights included the gourmet Sip & Savor Pavilion, featuring exceptional wines from a wide variety of high-end California wineries and distilleries. This was coupled with the Food Park, offering guests unique chef demonstrations and distinctive delicacies. The Radwood display featured a curated selection of automotive icons from the 1980s and 1990s, including the Porsche 959, Audi Quattro, Skyline GT-R R33 and more.

The Driver’s Lounge Presented by Gooding and Co. offered race competitors and VIP guests a luxurious relaxation area with an exclusive view of the track. BringATrailer.com hosted a special Alumni Gathering at the event on Saturday, June 1 for over 75 distinctive collector vehicles previously bought or sold on its website.

“The inaugural Sonoma Speed Festival was a great success,” said Ryan R. Turri, General Manager of the Sonoma Speed Festival. “We’ve exceeded our expectations in almost every way, and we’re thrilled with the experience we were able to provide for our guests and participants. We’d like to send a huge thank you to all that attended this year’s event.”

Learn more about the inaugural Sonoma Speed Festival on the event website and follow the action on Facebook and Instagram.

BAJA 500

ANDY MCMILLIN BLASTS HIS WAY INTO RECORD BOOKS WITH BAJA 500 WIN

Andy McMillin is celebrating his second big race victory of the year after winning the 51st edition of the SCORE Baja 500. McMillin started first on the grid due to his San Felipe 250 victory earlier in the year and he steered his Chevy Trophy Truck to another win in Mexico. The third Baja 500 triumph of McMillin’s excellent offroad career further underlines his legendary status in the sport.

McMillin arrived in the Baja Californian peninsula last week in a confident mood, thanks to securing his latest San Felipe 250 win in April. Next on his list of targets was to make it a hat-trick of Baja 500 wins by adding to his victories at the race in 2010 and 2017.

First place on the grid gave McMillin plenty of open road to aim at as he sped off the line on Saturday to complete the 487-mile (784km) route. Nine hours, 49 minutes and 12 seconds later he was back at the Estero Beach Resort in Ensenada. None of his competitors had been able to pass McMillin and the chequered flag was his to claim.

“We did it again! Overall winners of the SCORE Baja 500! It’s a huge effort from our whole team, the pit crews, the chase teams, my family. It’s a huge effort by all of us to try to win these races.” – Andy McMillin

Finishing runner-up to Andy McMillin at the 2019 SCORE Baja 500 was his cousin Luke. Bryce Menzies battled from an 11th place start to bring his Ford Trophy Truck home in third place, but an hour time penalty for pitting on the pavement saw him later classified as the sixth placed Trophy Truck.

Winning the first two races of this year’s series puts Andy McMillin clear at the top of the SCORE International Offroad Racing points table. He’ll be back in Ensenada in September to try and make it three wins in a row at the inaugural SCORE Baja 400.

INDYCAR

Newgarden capitalizes on timely pit stop to win Detroit doubleheader opener

DETROIT (Saturday, June 1, 2019) – A timely pit stop catapulted Josef Newgarden to victory in the rain-shortened opener of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear doubleheader, as well as back into the NTT IndyCar Series championship lead.

Newgarden won Saturday’s race by 0.8237 of a second over Alexander Rossi and capped a perfect day at Belle Isle Park for team owner Roger Penske, whose team also won the IMSA sports car race in the weekend event promoted by Penske’s group.

CHEVROLET DETROIT GRAND PRIX: Race 1 results

“It was great to have a victory here,” said Newgarden, whose best previous finish in 13 Detroit races was second place in the second race of 2017. “I think we’ve been strong here in the past. We’ve not been able to fully get a win.

“I think, as a team, we executed. We had the car. We definitely had the compliance, the speed from the car. I think Chevy gave us the power, the drivability. Today was a lot about drivability, especially in the wet. We had all that that we needed.”

Newgarden, in the No. 2 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet, made his lone pit stop of Saturday’s 75-minute race on Lap 17, among the first drivers to switch from Firestone’s grooved rain tires to dry-condition slicks. As Newgarden entered pit lane, a full-course caution was called when Ed Jones’ car slid into a tire barrier in Turn 7.

Newgarden credited race strategist Tim Cindric, Team Penske’s president, for making the critical call to the pits.

“I think when we pitted was the right time to pit,” Newgarden said. “You could tell the rain tires were starting to go off, the rears were overheating terribly because it was getting dry. You could see Rossi was struggling.

“We pitted at the right time and the yellow helped us even further. It was a great call.”

Newgarden inherited the lead when Rossi and the other frontrunners had to pit for slick tires on Lap 19 during the caution period, and he was never headed over the final 25 laps. It resulted in the 12th win of the Tennessean’s eight-year NTT IndyCar Series career and second this season. Newgarden won the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in March and retained the points lead until teammate Simon Pagenaud won the 103rd Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge six days ago.

Newgarden now holds a 25-point edge over Pagenaud and 33-point advantage on Rossi heading into the second leg of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix doubleheader that takes place Sunday. Coverage begins at 3 p.m. ET on NBC and the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network.

The start of Saturday’s race was delayed more than an hour after a thunderstorm moved through the area. INDYCAR adjusted the race from its scheduled 70 laps to a timed event, with 43 laps completed when the checkered flag waved for Newgarden.

The triumph was No. 267 in Indy car history for Team Penske, the most of any team. On the heels of Pagenaud’s May sweep at Indianapolis Motor Speedway – winning the INDYCAR Grand Prix on May 11 and Indianapolis 500 on May 26 – Team Penske drivers have captured the last three series races.

Rossi’s runner-up finish was his fourth top-seven result at Detroit in the past five races. The 27-year-old Andretti Autosport driver has finished first or second in three of the last four races this season – including a win on the streets of Long Beach, California, in April – but wondered what could have been Saturday.

“Yet again we’re on the wrong side of the yellow,” Rossi said of the fateful caution that aided Newgarden. “It’s part of the NTT IndyCar Series. Josef did a good job, didn’t make any mistakes there on the last stint.

“I think (my) car was great. … Ultimately, (we) just got jumped by Josef coming in a bit earlier before that yellow. I tried to push him into a mistake. We were flat out, but he’s a great driver and isn’t going to make mistakes.”

The Premiere Motorsport Podcast